Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Weidner exposes residents to increased risks during a pandemic

Weidner exposes residents to increased risks during a pandemic

 By: M.B.Varville-Rodriguez


Why schedule a major apartment renovation now?

Residents at Retreat at Austin Bluffs in Colorado Springs, Colorado continue to be exposed to contractors during a major renovation in the midst of a pandemic. Weidner has chosen to have all the windows/sliding glass doors replaced and the office staff are not permitted to tell residents what protocol is being implemented to minimize risk factors, except, "They're wearing PPE."  It is unclear whether the many contractors who go in and out of the apartments are asked the main COVID exposure questions or get temperatures taken. Contractors do not consistently wear PPE. It is also concerning that other residents may not follow COVID risk reduction protocols, thus creating multiple exposure points for this apartment complex. Residents have been told by management that they will not be reimbursed if exposed or if property is damaged.

Why is a major company such as Weidner intent on completing this type of project during a pandemic and thus exposing residents to health risks? 

If you go to Weidner's corporate office website at  https://www.weidner.com/home.aspx you will see their tag line as "Weidner Cares." Perhaps they need to ask residents how they feel about having their lives disrupted and their health placed at risk for a major, non-emergency, renovation. Some of the concerns include:

 1.    Our children are scheduled to participate in online schooling during the day when these renovations are taking place. The management has not addressed this concern or provided options for where the children are supposed to be during these invasive renovations.

2.    Some residents are unable to move the furniture away from the areas to be renovated due to heavy lifting that is required. The management stated that residents will not be reimbursed for any costs related to moving furniture.

 3.    Management has stated that residents who might get sick during this time of increased exposure will not be reimbursed for medical expenses or time lost from work.

 4.    Management has not provided a document that states what protocol is being used by the contractors to minimize exposure.

5.    Residents have observed improper or absent use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) per current CDC guidelines while contractors are on site.

6.    There are no visible hand washing/sanitizer stations on site.

Given that we are still in the midst of a pandemic, it is unclear who thought it would be a good idea to pursue this type of renovation project, thus exposing a large apartment complex filled with residents. Management reported trying to work with residents but are minimizing their concerns. "All the other residents didn't have a problem with this and were given 48 hours notice."  Well, this writer is advocating for those who are too scared to speak up for themselves. If Weidner truly cares about their residents, they would not place them in this situation, and would empower their managers to provide better alternatives.   

Here's the most important thing about this renovation. It is NOT an emergency. There is no risk of health or loss of property if this renovation is postponed.  This huge scale window replacement project can wait. If Weidner really cares.

The US department of Labor has guidelines for this type of situation. 

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Considering Adolescents in Treatment Planning - Mental Health & Wellness

Note: This is a reprint from 05/18/2020
There continues to be a need for this especially with everything that 2020 has presented.
Find your community resources and encourage each other. Give yourselves PERMISSION to access mental health services in your area.

Here is a recent post I found on social media:

 6 Top Reasons People With A 
Mental Illness
Don't Reach Out 

1. Fear of judgment

2. Guilt - Don't want to be a burden

3. Shame - They see others thriving and don't want to feel weak

4. Felt misunderstood on previous attempts,
 so choose to suffer in silence

5. Fear rejection - already feel unloveable, can't cope with another reason to add to that list

6. Fear criticism

Considering Adolescents in 
Treatment Planning
By: M.B.Varville-Rodriguez

  There are additional factors to consider when working with teens

I work with adolescents in a mental health facility. Some of the reasons they continue to have challenges managing their mental health concerns include:

1. Parents/Guardians feel that they will be blamed for their teen's problems if they pursue therapy.

2. Parents/Guardians blame a "symptom carrier" of the overall family dynamics when in fact ALL members of a family need to be included in a treatment plan. (This need is not usually included in a discharge plan from a mental health facility.)

3. Parents/Guardians have not dealt with their own dysfunctional coping skills and are unable to provide a foundation for their teen's healing process.

4. Family members expect a short term treatment facility to "cure" all the problems without additional resources, supports, or long term therapy.

5. Teens who are struggling with gender identity face criticisms, threats, and abandonment by family.

6. Teens who have been traumatized by sexual/emotional/physical abuse are afraid to report the incidents to their families or to other members in the community due to a variety of concerns. (Including judgment, blame, and disbelief)


1. There is no "magic formula" or short term "fix". On going treatment is often the best course of action. 

2. Be willing to accept your own part in managing the behaviors and consequences. Stop making excuses and start making a plan of action with professionals who specialize in treating adolescents.

3. Accept that you may need to put your ego on the side in order to develop healthier coping skills for every family member.

4. Progress is not linear. Think of it as going off-roading. You're going to have a lot of bumps in this road that will knock you side-ways. Hold on for the long ride. 

5. You cannot "yell" or "shame" the behaviors out of your teen. 

6. Give yourself plenty of grace to make mistakes and seek additional help from community resources. Pressing the "reset" button is an important concept in re-evaluating goals, strategies, and expectations. ~ WorldofWriterMom.org 

Wishing all of you a week of adventures, 
solutions to your challenges, 
and answers to your prayers.

Kindest Wishes,

Please join us for more discussion at:

Thursday, June 4, 2020

Create Better Leadership to Address Social Injustices

"Asheville Police destroy water bottles at med station set up to help treat people with
 chemical burns and other injuries inflicted by police." 
Posted on social media by advocate/activist
John Pavlovitz

  Fact checked at

Create Better Leadership to Address Social Injustices

by: M.B.Varville-Rodriguez

These are the behaviors that continue to create divisions. How can anyone think this is going to help? Supervisors need to become better leaders and provide comprehensive training that prevents incidents from escalating. LEADERSHIP on ALL levels from the top (POTUS) down through the ranks is the only way anything will change.

1. ADMIT when you've fucked up communication! I don't care who you are...just accept your part in these senseless tragedies.

2. AGREE that things need to change.

3. COMMIT to putting your own egos on the side. Claiming your way is the only right way to deal with legitimate concerns that will never lead to successful strategies or outcomes.

4. COMMUNICATE a desire to prevent dangerous behaviors that escalate unsafe situations.

5. CREATE betters ways to address how law enforcement and all emergency personnel engage with their community. (Regardless of how awesome/horrible you think your community is, we can always look at ways to do things better.)

6. PROMISE to have consequences and repercussions in place for those who refuse to abide by improved standards of conduct. There are many de-escalation programs available for training that can be accessed and practiced. ( I have personally been certified in two separate programs that practice safe handling, de-escalation techniques, and how to safely subdue someone who is in crisis.)

7. REMEMBER that everyone views their world through separate lenses. YOUR experiences do not equal that of someone else. If I claim that my world is more valid and worthy than another soul's, this makes me arrogant and lacking in compassion. I need to challenge myself to be more sensitive and aware. I need to acknowledge that what I think is right and necessary to be heard is not necessarily the experience of my neighbor.

8. UNDERSTAND there is no "one size fits all" solution to the problems we have seen over the past week. There are multiple layers that need to be addressed by many communities. The long-term, systemic trauma that has been allowed to continue is beyond the boiling point. What we have seen is not surprising at all. What is surprising is that we have failed to adequately address the concerns below surface level, but have expected more than is currently available. To clean a wound that is deep and diseased, you do not put on a band-aid. We cannot allow ourselves to be complacent and hope this "blows over." Serious remediation in terms of training at several levels needs to be initiated.

9. BECOME a part of the solution versus adding to the division. How can you get into your communities and be an active voice? Begin in your homes, on the job, within your company's culture, in your houses of worship, and when you are out and about in your community. When you view an injustice, learn how to communicate and de-escalate. (Beyond your "license to carry" which many are so passionate about.)

10. LOOK at how you might change your own attitude in the process of changing someone's heart.
ACTIONS speak louder than words. Share what you plan to do to make things better. Pick one of the above numbers or share one of your own ideas. Let's keep the conversation going.

Wishing all of you a week of introspection, 
solutions to your challenges, 
and answers to your prayers.

Kindest Wishes,

 Copyright 2020 WorldofWriterMom

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